When you first start off blogging it may only be for fun or for a hobby. You may just want somewhere to express yourself, your own virtual piece of land. I know this is why I originally started blogging. I wanted to “belong” to an online community, to share my knowledge and to learn more. I wanted to make friends and ultimately to create an online presence I could be proud of.
But as time passes you might begin to think and act like a professional blogger without even realizing it. I read this piece on Independent Fashion Bloggers, which was a great read as it can essentially be applied to any blogging category from financial blogs to mommy blogs. I realized after reading this article that technically I am a professional blogger. Yes I still maintain a full time job in the “real world” but deep down I would pretty much give anything to be able to live off an income by doing what I love. I spend hours a week on my blog not to mention money and energy.
Basically my blog has become like a second job. I finish up my real world job and then go home to work on my blog. I spend time taking and editing photos, writing content, thinking up ideas for posts, responding to comments, commenting on other people’s blogs and responding to emails regarding my blog.
So how do you know when you are a professional blogger? Here are some signs:
- You make some sort of income from your blog, be it from affiliate marketing, advertising or text links. You are contacted regularly by companies who want to work with your blog.
- You may be sent “freebies” from time to time for review purposes or brand promotion.
- You treat your blog like a job and act professionally at all times. After all, online credibility is everything to a professional blogger.
- Social media is important to you. You may spend time on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram promoting your online brand.
So how do you become a professional blogger?
Some people may still be at the hobby stage of their blog but would like to expand into professional blogging when they are ready. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Design is the key. Many hobby bloggers don’t have the best blog designs and may even be using the standard Blogger or WordPress themes. Make sure you put some time into your design or hire a designer to create a professional and unique look for your blog.
- Social Media- Get out there! Market your blog anywhere and everywhere! Facebook is a great way to grow your blog as is Twitter.
- Commitment. You need to be committed to seeing this through and not giving up.
- Stay true to yourself. You may be approached by companies who just don’t “fit” with your blog. It’s ok to say no and be true to your audience.
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